Ural Rex is an aboriginal type cat with curly, wave–laid hair, bred in the Sverdlovsk region. The breed is not widespread in the world and is most often found in Russia and Germany.
- Breed name: Ural Rex
- Country of Origin: Russia
- The time of the birth of the breed: 1960
- Weight: 3-6 kg
- Life expectancy: 12-16 years
- Hypoallergenic: Yes
- Ural Rex is a slowly developing and very rare breed, due to the small number of its representatives, as well as its non–commercial image.
- The breed does not tolerate even short-term loneliness, so it is better to take a kitten into a family whose members work at different times of the day.
- Breeders of Ural rexes often use a shorter name for their wards – "Urals".
- There are several breeding lines of the breed, which can cause confusion when choosing a kitten, since people from different kennels differ from each other in appearance. The lines known today are Petersburg, Moscow, Dresden, Sevastopol, Sverdlovsk.
- Ural rexes shed very sparsely, which is why they are often listed as hypoallergenic pets. At the same time, the protein Fel d1, which provokes allergic sneezing and lacrimation, is present in sufficient quantities in the saliva of the "Urals".
- A characteristic feature of the breed is intense purring at rest, so if a cat with a powerful "motor" is needed, it's worth looking at the rexes.
Ural rex is a fit "curly", easily finding a common language with any living creature, except representatives of the rodent family. Calm and unassuming, "Ural" will not cause trouble in everyday life and will not be picky if there is not the kind of food in his bowl that he expected. In exchange for playfulness and a positive attitude, Kotofey expects only one thing – the constant presence of a person in his life. Remember, loneliness not only irritates the breed, but also plunges it into a real depression, so when you get a Ural rex, get ready to face a choice: either a career in the office, or a cat.
History of the Ural Rex breed
Based on the name of the breed, it is easy to guess that its ancestors were from the Urals. Moreover, the first curly-haired cats appeared in this region back in the 20s of the last century and were an arbitrary product of an unknown genetic mutation. During the years of the Great Patriotic War, the number of cats in the Ural villages decreased sharply, so Soviet felinologists forgot about rexes for a while, mistakenly adding them to the lists of extinct feline types.
In the 60s of the XX century, rumors about curly-haired cats began to seep into the breeder communities again, but it did not go further than talking. As a result, the starting point in the formation of the breed is considered to be 1988, when the cat Vasily was born in the Ural city of Zarechny. The animal had a glamorous "fur coat" in curls and had a presentable appearance, therefore, as it matured, Vasya was knitted with straight-haired cats in order to obtain curly offspring.
Ural rexes have been flashing at breed exhibitions since 1993. Moreover, not only Vasily's descendants were exhibited in the ring, but also curly-haired individuals born from other cats who lived in the Sverdlovsk region. At the same time, breeding specialists tried to add the blood of Cornish rexes to the phenotype of the "Urals". Such experiments did not give a positive result, but they allowed us to establish that the genes responsible for the structure of the wool curl are different in breeds.
Curious fact: to date, another line of domestic curly-haired cats is known, leading its pedigree from the cat Murash, whose descendants were systematically crossed with Thais and Orientals. Strictly speaking, these pets are not Ural rexes, but since the animals do not have an independent breed status, they are sometimes mistakenly referred to the "Ural" family.
In 2006, WCF gave the "green light" for official breeding and pedigrees for Ural rexes. Following the World Federation of cats "Uralov" registered the MFA and FARUS. In the last decade, curly cats can be found not only in the Ural cities, but also in other regions of Russia, as well as in Germany and CIS countries. At the same time, a very limited number of kittens that meet the standard are born and sold annually, which significantly slows down the process of spreading the breed.
Video: Ural Rex
Ural Rex breed standard
Ural Rex is not the only curly-haired cat recognized by felinological associations, but it is impossible to confuse it with other "corrugated" breeds. And the point here is not only that, unlike Devon and Cornish Rex, Ural has a more canonical feline image. The design of the wool curls of the breed is also peculiar, so its representatives look as if they were slightly wetted, and then fixed the curls with styling wax.
The average Ural rex is a pet of moderate size. Cats of this breed weigh from 3 to 3.5 kg. Males have a more textured appearance and tend to build muscle mass from 4 to 6 kg. It is worth paying attention to the fact that spectacular wavy hair is the prerogative of exclusively adult cats. Kittens of the Ural rex are born clad in semi-closed chaotic curls that fit in smooth waves only by the age of 6-7 months. The complete "closure" of curls occurs only by the end of the second year of life, and in some individuals with a longer type of hair – after 2 years.
The skull is wide, in the form of a shortened wedge with soft outlines. The frontal part is rounded, the profile has a distinct transition with a light stop. Purebred rexes have pronounced cheekbones and pinch. The muzzles of the cats are wide and round, the chin has a smooth contour.
Long, convoluted shape. The fragility of the hair is not welcome.
Ural rexes have small or medium-sized ears. The optimal shape of the ear is like an equilateral triangle with a rounded top. The delivery of the ear cloth is as straight as possible with a good height.
The bright eyes of cats are wide open and have the shape of tonsils. The upper eyelids of the Ural rexes are characterized by a straightened line, for the lower ones – an arcuate line. The set of the eyes is preferably wide: there should be a distance between the organs of vision greater than the length of one eye. Any color of the iris is allowed.
The bodies of Ural rexes are compact, but toned and muscular. The torsos are developed-rounded, as are the chests. Abdominal folds are not marked.
Legs of good proportions, distinguished by slimness, average length and strength of the backbone. Well-assembled round paws end with fingers of normal length.
Is quite long, proportional, with a narrow base and thinner in the tip area. The tip itself is neat, oval contour.
The bodies of Ural rexes are covered with soft short wool of a silky structure. The coat forms a thin elastic wave of clearly outlined curls. The curls themselves hold their shape perfectly. The "fur coat" acquires the most spectacular and curly appearance by the end of the second year of the cat's life.
Ural rexes are allowed to have wool of any color. The exception is ticked, as well as weakened colors in any variations, including tabby, solid, tricolor and bicolor varieties. Wool of chocolate and cinnamon tones is also considered an unacceptable option. At the same time, the standard allows animals to have white spots on the body of any area and in any quantity.
Disadvantages and disqualifying vices
A real breed "Ural" should not be squat or too lean. The breeding commissions do not welcome such exterior features as a straightened profile, a narrow elongated head, round eyes, large or excessively miniature ears. Cats with any hair structure, except for the wavy type, as well as individuals with a rare coat, through which areas of skin shine through, are subject to disqualification.
The character of the Ural rex
Ural rex is not characterized by such truly feline character traits as the desire for independence and arrogance towards others. Moreover, a pet that "professes" contempt for representatives of domestic fauna and persistently tries to prove its superiority to the owner is a kind of phenomenon that makes you seriously think about the question of the purebred animal. The correct Ural rex is an invariably affectionate and playful cat, although it does not suffer from excessive stickiness. This friend tries to extend his natural charm not only to people, but also to the rest of the four-legged inhabitants of the house.
It cannot be said that representatives of the Rex family are such soft–bodied goodies - under the mood of the "Urals" they are not averse to fool around and play with little things dear to your heart, dropping them from shelves and tables. However, in general, "gangster" habits are not typical for the breed, so if the cat is a hooligan, then with one single purpose - to seduce you to participate in his games. For example, one of the favorite cat fun – aportirovka toys. According to the owners of the breed, curly-haired cats are given to this occupation completely and completely as long as the owner is ready to throw a cloth mouse or a ball. Sometimes Rex is not averse to hunting, which is quite natural: the instincts of the Ural ancestors who hunted small rodents are still strong in the breed.
In relations with fellow tribesmen, the "Urals" are friendly and peaceful. Cats are very sensitive to their own babies. Cats, in turn, do not try to deal with newborn offspring, which was often practiced by their mongrel ancestors. On the contrary, fathers from Ural rexes turn out to be first-class, on occasion always ready to babysit the younger fluffy generation. The rest of the "curls" are unusually cute, but quite typical cats who love to sunbathe and relax on windowsills, adore treats and consistently violate the boundaries of the owner's personal space in the morning.
Education and training
In the training of Ural rexes, it is advisable to rely on their innate passion for outdoor games and fun, so if your goal is to learn not only the rules of etiquette, but also a couple of circus tricks, you can easily afford it with the "Urals". The first thing with which the upbringing of a pet begins is the habituation to a routine. It is possible to convey to the consciousness of a tiny lump the meaning of the concept of "regime" with the help of strict planning of the day. Feed the kitten only by the hour, wean him from the habit of begging for food at night, always set aside time for an afternoon nap.
For the first six months, it is impossible to allow strong stressful situations that negatively affect the fragile psyche of the Ural rex. Do not allow the kitten to play alone in the yard and in general in any places where it can be disturbed by adult cats or dogs. It is necessary to instill toilet skills to a pet with an eye to the experience of the first breeder. When buying a Ural rex, check with the seller what type of toilet filler he uses. It is proved that cats get used to the tray faster if there is already a familiar filler in it.
Usually, after moving, the little "Ural" is disoriented and is not immediately able to find a toilet in a new house, so in the first weeks the kitten needs to be planted on the owner's tray. The optimal time to do "wet things" is 10-20 minutes after eating. The main thing is not to hide the tray in a remote room, but rather temporarily block access to other parts of the apartment until the baby gets used to it and learns how to use the toilet.
Simultaneously with hygiene skills, it is useful to master the nuances of using a scratching post. For the first scratches, scratching pads with valerian or catnip filler are suitable. At the same time, it is not necessary to hang them all over the apartment. At first, one accessory is enough. This will help the animal to understand faster that it is possible to polish its own claws in strictly designated places. As an option: bring the fuzzy to the scratching post immediately after sleep. Usually the need to take care of themselves in cats occurs after a long rest.
If, contrary to all the lessons, the Ural rex begins to mess up and dissolve the upholstery of furniture, use the fear factor. For example, suddenly spray him with a jet of water from a flower spray gun – it will not hurt the tailed bully, but the effect of an unpleasant surprise disciplines. In games with the baby, too, be on the alert. Don't let Rex get into a rage, scratch and bite. At first, such aggression looks funny, but as your pet grows up, you will like such attacks less and less.
Maintenance and care
Ural rexes are unpretentious and mostly unassuming cats. You will not have to spend money on any special accessories for the breed, a classic set is enough: bowls for eating and drinking, a tray, a house or a basket, scratching posts, toys for fun. Try to place the tray and food bowls as far away from each other as possible. Like most cats, Ural rexes are squeamish and try not to eat where the smell of their own toilet is felt.
The breed sheds very sparsely, but at the same time the cats' fur always remains neat and spectacular. Ural rexes do not need too frequent combing – it is enough to iron the body with a rubber mitten or a suede cloth once a week to collect dead hairs. In the off-season (spring, autumn), when the hair change is more intense, the procedure can be carried out twice a week. But kittens should be combed more often. This is the only way to speed up the process of changing junior wool to adult, with a characteristic wavy structure and a full curl.
Bathing is not contraindicated for cats, but there is also no point in abusing water procedures. The "Urals" have very sensitive skin, and each bath using shampoos and conditioning compounds is a strong stress, followed by a long recovery period for the epidermis. It is not recommended to dry the rexes with a hairdryer. Hot air negatively affects the structure of the wool curl, straightening it.
To clean the ears, it is better to use cotton pads or cotton cloth, as well as hygienic lotions such as "Bars", Hartz, "Pchelodar". Dust lumps can be removed from the corners of the eyes with a lint-free cloth soaked in chilled chamomile, tea or lime broth. By the way, this procedure is considered an excellent prevention of mild eye inflammation, which most cats pick up.
Despite the spectacular curly structure, the coat of the Ural rexes is thin and sparse. As a result: the animal needs a little more energy to heat the body than the average shorthair cat. Usually breeders recommend following the general rules of feeding, suitable for all small breeds, but at the same time slightly increase the calorage of the diet to cover the increased need of the "Urals" in energy reserves. At the same time, do not forget to keep your finger on the pulse and keep a reasonable balance. Ural rexes are prone to gluttony, leading to weight gain, which can also be a problem.
The natural diet of rexes is standard: any lean meat (including chicken and rabbit), which is more useful to give raw, offal, buckwheat, rice and oatmeal porridge (twice a week), vegetables and fruits (apple, squash, pumpkin, carrot). Once a week, the diet should be varied with boneless sea fish, egg yolk, a piece of low-fat cheese. For the strength of bones and joints, Ural rexes will have to be given dietary supplements, which will be picked up by a consultant in the vetaptek. Another affordable vitamin option is sprouted oats and special cat grass, the seeds of which can be purchased at the store and planted in a tray so that the pet always has access to fresh greens.
Owners who prefer to feed their wards with industrial feed, the purchase of dietary supplements and the planting of cereals can be neglected. Professional feeds already contain a stock of all the basic trace elements and amino acids necessary for a cat. The exception is cheap "drying" from the supermarket, in the production of which low–quality ingredients are used.
Ural rex feeding regime:
- from 3 to 6 months – five times a day;
- from 6 to 9 months – four times a day;
- from 9 to 12 months – 3 times.
A one-year-old cat can be safely transferred to two meals a day.
Health and diseases of Ural rexes
The average Ural rex quietly lives up to 14-15 years. As for genetic diseases, they have not been identified by specialists. However, it should be taken into account the fact that the breed is extremely small and some breeders have a positive attitude to inbreeding (closely related crossing), so it is possible that freedom from hereditary ailments is temporary.
How to choose a kitten
- Do not buy kittens from too young or too old parents. The optimal age of the offspring producer, according to the club breeding rules, is from 1.5 to 5 years.
- Specify what kind of litter it is for the year. Estrus in cats can occur every few months, but since frequent childbirth undermines the health of the animal and can cause the appearance of non-viable offspring, experienced breeders adhere to the well-known club rule: no more than 3 births in 2 years.
- Before visiting the nursery, study the photos of young Ural rexes on the Internet so that there is no break in the template – the kittens of the "Urals" do not look as impressive as adults, and you will have to put up with it.
- Look for reviews about the nursery and its owner. A mandatory requirement is the registration of a nursery in one of the felinological systems.
- Since the breed is small in number, and there are many unscrupulous sellers offering kittens of dubious origin, be sure to study the pedigree of the litter. It is desirable that at least one of the producers was marked at the breed exhibition.
The price of the Ural rex
Ads for the sale of Ural rexes on virtual bulletin boards do not flash very often, and usually curly-haired half-breed kittens are exhibited on them. It is better to look for real "Urals" in specialized nurseries that have WCF registration. Usually the cost of a kitten show in such places starts from $250 and ends in the area $350 – $400, depending on the pedigree, health status and exterior indicators of the animal. Sometimes mature and neutered rexes are offered for purchase, which cost one and a half to two times cheaper.